American Eskimo Dogs Organization Of Vancouver
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Training American Eskimo Dogs

American Eskimo dogs on average are intelligent and easily trained.  The key in getting your Eskie to listen to you is to be gentle and loving in your training.  If you loose your patience and yell at your dog, you will find that he will not listen to you and it will take some time to regain his trust.  Don't force him to do something he does not want to do.  Instead, try to talk him into it and if necessary, bribe him with a treat he loves.  During the process of training, when your dog does something right, praise him with your voice and feed him a small treat if you wish.  He will remember these gestures and be eager to perform again.

Training Collars

Getting the right training collar for your American Eskimo dog is extremely important.  Get the wrong collar and you can physically damage your dog.  If you have signed up for obedience classes or are seeing a dog trainer, it is most likely that they will advise you to get a choke chain as a training collar.  Be aware that veterinarians advise against typical choke chains.  When your dog pulls hard while on a regular choke chain, the chain tightens around the neck and can cause damage to nerves in the neck.  Also the main arteries that pass blood from the heart to the head flow through the neck and too much pressure can be exerted on these arteries when the choke chain is too tight around the neck.

We recommend the martingale type training collar.  It is a combination regular strong cloth collar with a section of choke chain.  You adjust the length of the collar around your dog's neck that the collar will tighten to when a correction is made. Then when your dog pulls and the collar length shortens, it will only tighten to the length you have set.  There is no risk of damage to your dog's sensitive nerves and arteries in the neck.  It is a far more gentler and humane training collar to use. 

Be aware that most Eskies are very good at escaping from all types of collars.  So we strongly recommend that when using a martingale training collar, also have your Eskie wear a harness.  Have one lead for the training collar and another lead for the harness.  So if your Eskie escapes out of the training collar, he is still under control with the harness.

Information on Harnesses

The Halty is another popular training collar often called for by dog trainers.  It is been our experience that no matter how well fitted these collars are, Eskies often escape right out of them.  They find it difficult to get used to and they will try to get out them.  Once they manage to get out of them, usually within a matter of a few seconds, you can bet they will try to get out of them again and again, especially when you least expect it.


Be sure you don't use any training collar on its own. Your Eskie will most likely try to get out of it a few times when you first start using it. Take your American Eskimo to an area where there is no traffic in case he/she makes a break for it. We always use the harness and the training collar together.

Keep the leash length the same for both the harness and training collar. Tug lightly on the training collar leash when they are about to misbehave. When you tug on the training collar leash, say "No" at the same time. With the leash correction and voice command, your Eskie gets a clear message. 

Try to correct as the bad behaviour is about to happen. It's all about timing the correction, keeping calm and communicating effectively. With our Eskies, we found that lowering the voice and whispering the commands works best. Something special about whispering that they like. Instant attention grabber.

Have fun with the training. Bring along your Eskie's favourite treats. Praise them a lot and reward them with a treat when they do well. Positive re-enforcement goes a long way in helping an Eskie to learn.  

How To Train Your Eskie To Stop Barking

Barking excessively is to known to be an issue with American Eskimo dogs. Click here to learn how you can train your Eskie to stop barking.

Potty Training Your Eskie

Potty training your Eskie is pretty easy if you do it right. Your puppy has to be old enough to learn and with the proper guidance, here's how you can potty train your Eskie puppy.

Training Resources

An excellent resource for learning how to train your American Eskimo is the TV show called "The Dog Whisperer". The shows airs on the National Geographic Channel on Sundays in Canada and on Fridays in the USA. Caesar Millan is the Dog Whisperer. He has amazing insight, intuition and talent in understanding dog behaviour. You'll learn something new every time you watch the show. Be sure to learn how you can become your pack leader by watching the show and reading his book.

The Dog Whisperer, Caesar Millan
Tames An Aggressive Eskie Named Cotton

This video is from a "Dog Whisperer" episode last year. Cotton is aggressive towards people who come to the house and will charge and sometimes bite people when they ring the front door bell. In this video, Caesar shows you how he deals with this problem and trains Cotton to become calm and submissive.  After you watch the video below, you'll see a series of images across the bottom of the video.  These are links to other videos taken from other "Dog Whisperer"  episodes.  Click on any one of the images at the bottom of the video to see outtakes from other episodes or click on the Menu button at the bottom right to select other videos to watch.


Eskies used to be used in circus acts because they are so intelligent and are easy to train. Watch this YouTube video of Atka's Smorgasbord of Tricks and you'll see how clever your Eskie truly is!

To train your Eskie to do tricks, use hand signals and voice commands simultaneoulsy. The thing with hand signals is that is should be easy for your Eskie to differentiate between one hand signal and another. Be consistent in using the same one or two word voice command. 

To train for tricks, you need to use a handful of treats along with your hand signals and voice commands. Place your Eskie's favourite treat in the hand that you are using for the hand signal.  Make sure he knows the treat is in your hand. Show him the treat in your hand so he learns to focus on your hand. Then slowly move your hand and display the hand signal. Your Eskie will be glued to your hand and within a few tries will learn what the hand signal and voice command means.

For example, if you want to train your Eskie to walk between your legs, you would put a treat in your hand, then show the treat to your Eskie and move your hand from in front of you and through your legs. Your Eskie will follow the treat. The hand signal you could use to train your Eskie to follow your hand is point with your index finger. After several tries, he or she will learn to follow your hand when your index finger is pointed. He or she will follow that hand anywhere until they get the treat. Eventually you get them to follow your hand signals without any treats. Then you reward them at the end of their performance with treats.

The best method to train for tricks is to focus on one trick at a time. Practice the trick several times each day for a few days. Then they will most likely never forget the trick. Once they have it down, move on to the next trick. Practice that for a few days. After they have learned several tricks, then you can get to practice executing several tricks in a row.

Repetition, practice and treats are the key to successfully training your Eskie to do tricks.

K9 Freestyle Dancing - Eskie Style

Trish and Snowy love to dance. Snowy shows off countless dance moves. She is so talented. Watch this YouTube video and you'll be inspired to put on your boogie shoes and teach your Eskie some dance moves!

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